Property Marilyn Monroe has come to the defense of Ana de Armas after criticism over her accent in her portrayal of Monroe in an upcoming biopic.
The movie Blonde, based on Joyce Carol Oates’ novel, embraces Monroe’s fame. It was directed by Andrew Dominik and will be released on September 28 by Netflix.
When the trailer for the film was released in late July, some viewers said they heard hints of De Armas’ Spanish accent when she delivers Monroe’s famous breathy tone. De Armas was born in Cuba and acted in Spain before moving to Hollywood.
In an interview De Armas spoke to the Times last year about the struggle to perfect Monroe’s accent, saying it took nine months of dialect training.
“It was a lot of torture, so exhausting. My brain was fried,” she said.
Marc Rosen, president of entertainment for Authentic Brands Group (ABG), which owns the Monroe property, defended the casting.
“Marilyn Monroe is a singular Hollywood and pop culture icon that transcends generations and history,” he said.
“Every actor who takes on this role knows they have big shoes to fill. Based on the trailer alone, it looks like Anna was the perfect casting choice as she captures Marilyn’s charm, humanity and vulnerability. We can’t wait to see the full movie!
De Armas also said that director Dominik was confident in her ability to portray Monroe after one audition, but she “had to audition before everyone else.”
“Producers. Money people. I always have people I had to convince. But I knew I could do it. Playing Marilyn was groundbreaking. Cuban girl playing Marilyn Monroe. I really wanted it,” she said.
In a separate interview with Netflix Tail.De Armas said she “read Joyce’s novel, studied hundreds of photographs, videos, audio recordings, films, anything I could get my hands on. Each scene is inspired by an existing photograph. We examined every detail of the picture and discussed what was happening in it.
Brad Pitt, whose production company Plan B is producing the film, also praised De Armas while criticizing her accent in the film.
“She’s phenomenal here,” Pitt said New York Post. “It’s hard to fill a dress. It was 10 years in the making. It wasn’t until we found Anna that we were able to beat him at the finish line.